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James Chiang's Weekly Blog for Creative Insight & Inspiration

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Freedom From vs Freedom To

“Fools stand on their island of opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land; there is no other life but this.” ― Henry David Thoreau, Poet When we refer to freedom, especially here in the west, we think of the idea of having options; the opportunity to endlessly do, limitlessly choose and… Continue reading →

Sabateurs & Saviours: Part 2

“The universe is also actively benevolent.” — Steven Pressfield, Writer We’ve discussed the ego — that malevolent force of resistence that entices with its rationality, ambition and self-serving obsession — but bigger and more powerful is the force of honour, truth, beauty and freedom. That amazing creative energy is incalculable, immeasurable and often...

Saboteurs & Saviours: Part 1

Being an artist is hard. The promise of true freedom, honest self-expression, and joyful meaningfulness is often met with harsh and seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Those obstacles are the Saboteurs to your creativity calling. “… any act that derives from our higher nature instead of our lower… will elicit Resistance.” — Steven Pressfield, Writer...

A bit about Acting

“I believe in imagination. I did Kramer vs. Kramer before I had children. But the mother I would be was already inside me.” — Meryl Streep, Actor Acting is hard. That’s the first thing one has to acknowledge when one begins to study its form. Some would even say that actors are born and not… Continue reading →

The Giving Spirit

“Art is the giving by each man of his evidence to the world. Those who wish to give, love to give, discover the pleasure of giving. Those who give are tremendously strong.” — Robert Henri, Artist The generosity of spirit that the artist has to expend is often ummeasurable. He commits significant resources for his… Continue reading →

Student Showcase 4

“Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.” — Aristotle, Philosopher In continuing our Student Showcase series of BEFORE and AFTER (Private Training with me here at Animated Spirit), I’d like to discuss today the progress of two artists who have exhibited exceptional patience in their development. One had worked a bit in television animation,… Continue...

Student Showcase 3

“… to love life through labour is to be intimate with life’s inmost secret.” — Kahlil Gibran, Philosopher/Artist In the next few of weeks, I’ll be showcasing some more work from my current students/clientele. What will be unique is that it will FEATURE THE STUDENTS WORK BEFORE ATTENDING MY CLASSES VERSUS AFTER. This before and after… Continue reading...

Capacity vs Accumulation

“No valid plans for the future can be made by those who have no capacity for living now.” — Alan Watts, Philosopher What does it mean to learn? To understand? Is it as simple as accumulating more and more information? Or perhaps maybe it has more to do with actually understanding the material that is… Continue reading →

Favorite Films Part 13: Moral Inspiration

“Compassion is the basis of morality.” ― Arthur Schopenhauer, Philosopher In contrast to my previous post on the growing amorality enveloping society and that of my prolonged discourse — for which I ask forgiveness — here are some films I’d like to recommend that offset the tide. These cinematic pieces remind us of the power that… Continue reading →

Art & Ethics

“A society founded on signs is, in its essence, an artificial society in which man’s carnal truth is handled as something artificial.” — Albert Camus Dare we talk about morals? I think in the times that we live in today, which seems so artificial, we have to. Globally now, we’re all very engaged in commercialism,… Continue reading →

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